Nasolabial folds are the indentation lines on either side of the mouth that extend from
the edge of the nose to the mouth’s outer corners. They become more prominent
when people smile.
These folds also tend to deepen with age. Some people develop wrinkles next to the
nasolabial folds, which may be more visible during smiling. These sometimes-called
smile lines or laugh lines.
Even newborns have nasolabial folds. Except people whose faces are paralyzed due
to a medical condition, almost everyone has nasolabial folds.
The folds, which are made of dense bundles of fibrous tissue and muscles, tend to
become more prominent with age.
As the skin becomes saggy and thinner, many people find that their nasolabial folds
become more noticeable.
Some people just don’t like these folds and want to get rid of them.
Nasolabial folds are a normal part of human anatomy, not a medical
condition but just one of the signs of aging. As people age, however, these
folds can become deeper and may also sag.
With age, some people also develop lines next to the nasolabial folds.
Others develop lines that extend down to the chin, which are sometimes
referred to as marionette lines.
Nasolabial folds become more noticeable due to a variety of factors,
- Sun exposure, which damages the skin, causing wrinkles and changes in
- Loss of collagen with age, making the skin look weak and thin
- Sagging skin and loss of fat, especially under the cheeks area, which can
make the cheeks and nearby regions appear saggy
- In general, as we aged, our whole face tends to shrink or lose volume,
which make our face look tired and droopy. This enhance the visibility of
the nasolabial folds.
- As the skin ages, facial expressions can cause deeper wrinkles. Just as
frequent scowling can cause lines near the eyebrows, smiling can make
nasolabial folds deeper.
Other causes of the deepen nasal labial fold:
- Exposure to environmental pollutants
- Rapid weight loss or frequent fluctuations in weight
Although it can make a person feel unhappy about herself or himself, it
doesn’t cause any physical debilitation. Nasolabial folds are a cosmetic
issue and are sometimes treated to make a person feel happy about
Some people who find that their nasolabial folds are especially pronounced
may prefer to eliminate them and will usually feel better about themself
once the nasolabial folds are reduced. Some cosmetic procedures can
reduce the appearance of nasolabial folds or eliminate them.
Treatment options include:
1/ Dermal fillers
Dermal fillers are implants that are placed just under the skin. They can
plump up the skin, reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
A doctor can apply dermal fillers just under the skin in the nasolabial fold
area or the upper cheek area to give the cheeks a lift, making the
nasolabial folds less noticeable. The procedure can take place in a doctor's
Fillers cannot make nasolabial folds disappear, but they can make them
less pronounced. They can also be used to help nearby skin look fuller and
The treating doctor will need to be masterful at the art of facial profiling and
at the same time have total understanding about facial anatomy, especially
the complex interconnecting system of the blood vessels.
2/ Skin resurfacing treatments
Some skin resurfacing treatments can help the skin surrounding the
nasolabial folds look more youthful. Laser skin resurfacing like the
fractional CO2 laser, for example, can reduce the appearance of scars and
Newer, non ablative lasers such as the fractional picosecond laser can help
tighten the skin and also reduce the nasolabial folds.
There is no method for preventing nasolabial folds — even children have
them when they smile.
Those who would like to prevent them from getting deeper or more
pronounced should wear sunscreen and protect their face from the sun.
This can slow the damage of the sun's harmful UV rays.
There is no other research-supported method for preventing nasolabial
Nasolabial folds are a normal part of the face, not a defect. Although they
can grow or deepen over time and as a result of smiling. You can reduce
them easily with filler if you wish.
People who are bothered by their nasolabial folds should speak with a
dermatologist or a cosmetic physician who specializes in aesthetic
The right treatment will depend on many personal factors, and what works
for one person might not work for another.
Anyone considering cosmetic procedures should ask their healthcare
professional a lot of questions and be clear about their expectations.